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To CAPTCHA or not?

What is a CAPTCHA?

A CAPTCHA is a challenge response test to try and stop auto generated responses from a computer. The idea is that the challenge can only be interpreted by a human. However, this isn’t always the case as some are easily bypassed. They also put many people off especially if the challenge is to read an image that is far too hard to read even for a human.

SEOMoz has posted some original research on effect of CAPTCHAs on conversion rates

With CAPTCHA’s on, SPAM and failed conversions accounted for 7.3% of all the conversions for the 3 month period. With CAPTCHA’s off, SPAM conversions accounted for 4.1% of all the conversions for the 3 month period. That could possibly mean that when CAPTCHA’s are on the company could lose out on 3.2% of all their conversions!

In other words, a significant proportion of frustrated customers simply abandon their attempts to get past the CAPTCHA. Ironically some spam still got through!

I am not a big fan of CAPTCHA and this information just adds to it. I don’t like filling out a CAPTCHA and I am sure most of you when you encounter a CAPTCHA give out a sigh. How many times have you filled one out only to be told there was an error and you have to do it again. Some of the CAPTCHAs I come across are very hard to read the text and it takes a few goes to get it right, this totally puts me off and some times I just don’t bother.

So they reduce user experience on your website, which is not good and could reflect on your brand.

2 Comments (Add Yours)

  1. I agree, it’s like we’re being told by the website that they don’t really trust us.